We can thank Herodotus and Callimachus, ancient Greek historians, for the concept of the 7 wonders of the world. They compiled lists of both natural and manmade wonders that inspired awe and delight for the civilizations that lived in the Mediterranean region. Though here in 21st century Colorado you’d be hard pressed to find colossal statues of Zeus and structures of the scale of the Great Pyramid of Giza, we do have at least 7 wonders of Colorado that stick out as particularly special and unique.

From Colorado’s rolling plains to its snowcapped peaks, meadows of wildflowers to desert moonscapes, the Centennial State is full of places to explore. We guarantee that a visit to any of these destinations will be unforgettable. Which destinations would you add to this list of the 7 wonders of Colorado? Send us your ideas for our Adventure Lists at team@outtherecolorado.com so that we can feature your favorite destination!

1. Garden of the Gods

Garden of the Gods.
Garden of the Gods.

This aptly named nature center located in Colorado Springs is a natural red rock phenomenon. It was named a national natural landmark in 1971 and attracts thousands of visitors every year, including over 130 species of birds.

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2. Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve
Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve

In southern Colorado, a desert hides between the mountains. Over the course of approximately 130,000 years, wind blew sand and sediment into the valley, forming the dunes that you can visit today. 77 animal species live on the 44,000 acres of this sandy landscape. If you go, rent a sandboard and cruise down the dunes!

Click here for more about Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve!

3. Maroon Bells

Maroon Bells
Maroon Bells

More than 300,000 people visit the Maroon Bells near Aspen, Colorado every year. Let’s assume that every visitor takes three photos: a landscape shot, a selfie, and a portrait with family and friends. That’s almost 1 million photos of the Maroon Bells per year! That many photos alone is enough to make this stunning destination one wonder of Colorado.

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4. Picketwire Canyonlands

Picketwire Canyon Dinosaur Tracks - OutThere Colorado
Dinosaur prints at Picketwire Canyonlands in eastern Colorado.

At the bottom of Picketwire Canyon lies the Purgatoire River tracksite, the most extensive dinosaur tracksite in North America. A 10.6-mile round trip hike will take you deep into the Comanche National Grasslands, past an early Spanish mission, and to the track site. Bring water!

Click here for more about Picketwire Canyonlands!

5. Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park
Mesa Verde National Park

The Ancestral Puebloan peoples of the Four Corners region left behind incredible monuments to their civilization. Scramble over cliffs, up and down ladders, and through ancient byways to experience one of the most important cultural monuments in the United States.

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6. Royal Gorge

Royal Gorge - OutThere Colorado

The Arkansas River rushes through the base of this breathtaking canyon. Viewing options include an adrenaline-inducing zipline, rafting on the river, and walking across the Royal Gorge Bridge, one of the highest bridges in the world.

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7. Wheeler Geologic Area

Wheeler Geologic Area snowpeak (Flickr)
Wheeler Geologic Area. Photo Credit: snowpeak (Flickr)

Eroded layers of volcanic ash make up the spires of this otherworldy landscape. The Wheeler Geologic Area was actually Colorado’s first national monument established in 1908. It lost its title in 1950 when it became a protected area of the La Garita Wilderness Area. Start your visit to this incredible place from Creede, Colorado.

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We are driven by our deep respect for our environment, and our passionate commitment to sustainable tourism and conservation. We believe in the right for everyone - from all backgrounds and cultures - to enjoy our natural world, and we believe that we must all do so responsibly. Learn More